Family meal is bloody hard work when you’re skint

Food-1

The weekend provided by far the hardest day of the challenge so far, as there was a family meal to go to, and it involved sitting, drinking water, watching people eat, watching people eat my food, and feeling incredibly hungry by the end of it…

I did, however, get some of my food wrapped up so I could take it home, freeze it, and have it on Thursday! Bonus. Was comedy at times, but pretty miserable for a meal! It’s rare my resolve gets tested so much, as loving family cheerfully point out: “Just have a bit of that Yorkshire Pudding, that only cost a couple of p to make…” and “We won’t tell anybody…” Still, now it’s wrapped and frozen I have something I can eat at the end of the challenge, so that’s nice. Once again something that people living in genuine poverty can’t look forward to.

It’s feeling pretty hard work now. I thought it would be relatively easy overall, as I don’t really eat much anyway, but it’s just not. Obviously I’m trying to keep this blog as light-hearted as possible – it’s not really about me – but just an insight into what it’s like if you’re genuinely trying to live on a tiny amount of money.

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The things I’ve picked obviously do a job, but I’ve definitely lost a kg or two, and it’s amazing how quickly you tend to feel peckish again. I know there are more effective ways of spending the pound, too, and on more varied food that do a better job, but there you go!

Yesterday I splashed out on rubbish as a weekend treat – packet of crisps, some waffles, and enjoyed drinking the end of the apple juice. Still been munching through the porridge a couple of times a day, and still have a few slices of bread left.

Today’s money went on fruit, bananas, an apple, and some more biscuits, although I haven’t had them yet – will eat them tomorrow when I’m in the office. Hopefully I’ll have enough for a pint of milk and something cereal (that isn’t porridge) tomorrow night.

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The Evening Telegraph came round today to take some photographs of my fundraising attempt, so be sure to buy Thursday’s edition if you’re in Northamptonshire. Hopefully it’ll help raise a couple of pounds.

I’ll upload the pics of the rest of the food I’ve bought / receipts later, as I realise there’s only so many photographs of bananas you can look at!

And as always, please text PHLL90 £3 to 70070 to make a donation to me and Save the Children. It’s free to text on all UK networks, and every single penny goes to charity. Please check out my JustGiving page as well.

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You’ve helped to save the life of 14 children!!

below-the-line-idiot

It was all going so well. Until I cheerfully waltzed into the supermarket thinking I had amassed £1.12, rather than £1.09. After buying a carton of apple juice and a couple of bananas, I blew the budget by a whopping 2p – the shame. Oh the shame.

So as penance, I will be paying a £10 fine to Save the Children. Seems fair. Anyway, I’m back on track today – I bought an apple, some beans and a banana, as I didn’t really need much – still have porridge left, still have half a loaf of bread, still have biscuits, so was nice to buy some stuff without really thinking about it.

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Would still like more drink though – the apple juice I bought yesterday is already nearly gone, and it hits home that some people really do have no choice. Picking something over water is the least of their problems – it’s pretty difficult to imagine really.

Yesterday I went back to eating porridge and a couple of sandwiches, along with my banana, again, and today has provided oven chips, beans on toast, along with said apple and banana. And as above, it’s just been nice to drink something other than water!

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I managed to get in touch with the local paper to try and whip up some publicity to ask people to donate. So keep an eye out for me. At least 150 of you lot still haven’t helped me – if you came from Facebook you know what to do. I am not just going to go away – I’ll start harassing you by telephone next!! At the very least, please share this blog with your friends and family.

And text PHLL90 £3 to 70070. It’s free to text on any UK number, or you can also donate via my JustGiving page. You know the drill.

Ask me to the pub next week when it’s over, and I’ll even buy the drinks, so you’ll get your money straight back. Just help me to make a difference to Save the Children! Deal?

And finally: a MASSIVE THANK YOU to those of you who’ve donated. Thank you to the people I know and care about, the people I don’t talk to very often, and amazingly, the people I’ve never actually met before. I’m staggered by your kindness. With your help (and mine, now I’ve paid the idiot fine!), we’ve now raised enough money to pay for 14 life-saving courses of anti-biotics for infected new born children.

I don’t think I can say that clearly and loudly enough

YOU’VE HELPED TO SAVE THE LIVES OF 14 CHILDREN!!

How cool is that?

So can I do menial tasks for beer..?

dance

This living below the line malarkey ain’t what it’s cracked up to be. It’s playing havoc on my social life, for a start, and I’ve had to change a number of plans. Thing is, you only get one ‘leaving drinks’, and that’s not something I can change, so is there a potential way round my £1 per day?

Lets start with the leaving drinks. Would I be cheating the challenge if I do something menial to add pennies to the £1? Would you feel cheated of your donation, for instance, if I fetch every round from the bar in return for 50p? If I take all the glasses back to the bar? If I carry things for people, and be at their beck and call?

Is there a way I can top up the £1? I’d love to hear you opinions, so please leave a comment below – a lot of you have donated and I really appreciate it, so I definitely don’t want to step out of line.

That’s a problem for next Tuesday anyway, but I wanted your feedback.

Another thing I’d like your feedback on is entertainment. Where does it stop? Or start. So far, I haven’t spent a penny (in the literal sense, not the metaphorical toilet sense..), but this is getting a bit dull.

With the weekend coming up, I’d like to know what I’m allowed to do, and what’s off limits. I’m not going to cruise up to the golf course for a round of golf, obviously, but can I take my clubs to a field to whack balls? Or do I have to make my clubs? And balls…

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And can I spend my £1 on something else – can I spend it on 2p slot machines, gambling in a bid for huge success – rather than spending it on food? Again, not something your average person in Africa can do, but I thought it could spice things up. The stakes couldn’t be higher – lose the £1, nothing extra to eat that day.. (OK, they could easily by higher! But it’ll still be a bit of a bugger for me if it goes wrong!).

You get the input, as obviously it’s you donating. And on the subject of donating, all you have to do is text PHLL90 £3 to 70070. It’s free to text on all UK networks. You can also donate £5, or £10, or visit my JustGiving page to donate more. With one child dying every 15 seconds, even a couple of pounds will make all the difference.

Back in the real world…

In the real world, and back to the £1 per day, I went a bit crazy (oh yes) yesterday and blew £1 on oven chips! That probably won’t surprise some of you, and it’s probably not what the starving Africans would do (freezer no doubt being a slight issue), but it’s still within the rules.

chips

I’ve been warned off buying butter by a reader, and I’m actually thinking of listening for once! Which is a surprise. Tempted just to go and buy fruit today – apples, bananas, an orange! I think I’m up to £1.09, so I should be able to buy a few things. It’s just nice to have a bit of choice!

Oh yes ladies, that’s right, I *am* buying Tesco Value bread..

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They say supermarkets are a fantastic place to meet potential partners. And I can imagine there’s nothing more attractive than seeing some bloke rock up at the checkout looking incredibly smug because he’s managed to get a loaf of bread, something to put on it, and a couple of bananas to top it off! Oh yes, I am a total catch.. Mr Cheap himself.

As it stands, we’re under budget at a staggering 99p, leaving me £1.09 to play with tomorrow.

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Which is brilliant, as it means I can spend the money on something that apparently everybody else can’t believe is not butter. I can’t say I agree with them, to be frank, as it tends to be a brighter shade of yellow than the banana I’m about to enjoy. Still, that’s a battle for tomorrow.

As for today, I’ve currently had a couple of bowls of porridge, the packet of biscuits is now half eaten, but I think things will last a lot longer now I can have a sandwich. Albeit without butter!

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My evening snack:

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And my weight. It’s gone down from the first time I checked it, but I’d imagine it’ll be up a bit once I’ve eaten. I doubt I’ve managed to lose that much in two days! Hopefully not anyway!!

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One day down, nine to go…

Here you go then, the £1 I started off with…

Money

Which quickly went on the following:

Stuff

The porridge seemed apt. They always send oats to people in crisis, right? Just add water…
Well it was completely revolting, and I remember now why I don’t eat porridge! Still, not so hungry today at least.

mmm

And the change from yesterday:

Change

Will do a full update this evening, so stay tuned! Just wanted to share what I’ve been eating so far (along with three pints of water!).

And as always, you can donate by texting PHLL90 £3 to 70070. It’s free to text on any UK network, and every penny goes to Save the Children.

It’s the start..!!

It's the start..!!

Well, today is the first day of living on £1 per day. Here’s what I weigh, just in case I end up weighing considerably less after 10 days!

I haven’t had anything to eat yet, as I’ve not had time to go and spend my five 20p pieces..

Will update you this evening when I go shopping. Until later, well, you know the drill:

Text PHLL90 £3 to 70070 to help my cause – Save the Children. It’s free to text on all UK networks.

Definitey no Jaffa Cakes.. er.. cakes

No-jaffa

So yesterday I caused a bit of a hoo-hah at work by forgetting to clear up my mess. It was a Jaffa Cake.. cake. And it was lovely. It appears that I also dribbled most of it over the desk, but that’s by the by.

The fact is, the pack of Jaffa Cakes was more than £1. As is just about everything else many of us keep consuming. So I can enjoy it now, but my colleagues will be delighted to know that I won’t be scoffing them in the office next week.

Shame. And apologies to my colleagues!

I can see that plenty of you haven’t donated yet. Please do. Just text PHLL90 £3 to 70070. It’s free to text. Every penny goes to Save the Children. And with your help, my colleagues won’t have to clear up Jaffa Cakes cakes cakes for the near future!